The People That Make Us Go
WAMC is such a joy to work at. It really is a team. Many people who listen have no real idea of what it’s like to be part of this operation or about some of the behind-the-scenes players. Let me start with the two mainstays of the place, Stacey Perry Rosenberry and Holly Urban. By no means should my writing about these two remarkable women be taken to minimize the incredible work of all the others who work at the station, some of whom, like the editor of this newsletter, Ashleigh Kinsey, I have already written about.
Stacey started working here, as so many others have, as a control room board operator. She went to school at SUNY Morrisville and then Plattsburgh. To put it mildly, this woman can do anything. She is now in charge of all operations at the station and along with Holly Urban, she is responsible for running the everyday activities of the place including keeping us on the air under the most difficult of circumstances. She and her top aide, Jessica O’Rourke, do a remarkable job. We are talking about a 24/7, full time commitment. If a station goes off the air or if anyone has any kind of problem extending far beyond the technical aspects of the station, it is Stacey who is called on to pick up the pieces. It’s not as if she doesn’t have a household and young children to take care of but she is always reachable and can clearly get along with very little sleep.
The thing that I really love about Stacey is her toughness. In the best sense, she really knows how to stand up to every challenge and she does not let herself get pushed around. One quickly learns that Stacey’s self-confidence makes her a perfect administrator. She is great under pressure and she always contributes ideas to fix difficult problems, often with the aid of a terrific sense of humor. When we recently bought the broadcasting tower on the top of Mount Greylock, it was Stacey who rally carried the load, instructing lawyers and accountants on what to do next.
Every morning Stacey comes into my office for a conference on what problems are facing us. When you have twenty-eight stations (twenty-nine if you count on line), that’s a lot to worry about. If the weather is bad somewhere it can cause a certain amount of radio hell. When a storm causes a power outage, it can sometimes take hours to restore. You can only imagine what Stacey is going through as she starts calling the various electric companies. Of course, if the problem is at the top of Mount Greylock there is the matter of getting to the top of the tallest mountain in Massachusetts. With the acquisition of the broadcasting tower, Stacey’s job has gotten even harder because we now have tenants who depend on us to keep things right.
Stacey works hand in hand with Holly Urban, another phenomenally in-charge woman. She has the added advantage of having been raised in our local area. Now that the station’s budget hovers around seven million dollars, our board needs accurate and up to date information. When we needed someone to make things right, we hired Holly who had an incredibly impressive background in accounting and management. She was originally hired from a consulting agency, CFO-For-Hire and we knew immediately that she was first rate. A graduate of Siena College, she really knows her stuff. Our board of trustees has come to really rely on her for accurate reporting and fiscal management.